Vlogging is replacing blogging. Or at least, that’s certainly how it feels. Whilst major players in the fashion blogging world continue to look amazing, take beautiful photographs, and crate amazing content, technological advances have only served to make us greedy for new varieties of content. In a nutshell, we’ve become obsessed with other people and simply want more. It’s time to adapt and try something new. Every day one of my favourite bloggers pops up launching a YouTube channel. Social media has made us curious and nosy – we want to know more about people, not just look at a pretty picture. And that’s where YouTube comes in. Being there on screen, talking away takes you from being a two dimensional photograph to a real life human being (although in a virtual, on-screen way.)
Having studied journalism in my BA and MA, and currently working as a fashion writer in the online team at a luxury UK department store, I can firmly state that I am still rooted in the blogger camp rather than vlogger. I found it hard to jump over the hurdle of creating video content when I found both reading and writing so enriching, and quite frankly, I only watched YouTube videos when I wanted a gory Halloween makeup tutorial. But with a hugely expansive audience sitting on that platform waiting for new, exciting and engaging people to discover, it’s such a waste not making the most of it and jumping into the YouTube pool. But where to start? Here are the 5 big fears I had before starting my channel and how I got over them!
Starting a YouTube channel can be daunting because it’s a little bit like starting your blog all over again. As a new platform, you’ll probably have no subscribers. Zilch. Nada. And that’s a lonely little world. It’s easy to get comfortable with your Instagram/ Bloglovin/ Twitter following serving as a constant stroke to your ego because it shows that some people (to a certain degree) actually give some form of shit about what you say and do, but starting off fresh on a new platform with a big fat 0 feels as though you’ve had that safety blanket ripped right off you and you’re left feeling naked and exposed with no followers to hit the like button. It feels damn weird. And you know that you’ve got to put in that graft again to grow a subscriber base.
But luckily, because you already have that following from other social networks, it makes it a lot easier to grow your channel then if you started both a blog and YouTube off at the same time. So take a deep breath, take the plunge, and go with it.
Another similar issue I faced was simply “who even cares?” I mean, I’ve known myself all of my life so nobody could be more bored of me than me. Who is even interested enough to want to see what I have to say?
Well, this goes back to people being nosy. Having racked my brain for why I’m possibly unique enough from anyone else (result: I’m just not) and scouring successful to mildly successful YouTube channels ran by people similar to me, I realised there’s a lot of samey content out there. Beauty tutorials, Get Ready With Me’s, haul posts, and lookbooks. The list goes on… but they are successful videos because people are nosy and interested in other people. So it might be the same idea, but it’s a different person doing it, so the result is different. Also, if you already have a blog with a good following, there’s a good chance those people will care about what you have to show too.
Working out what kind of content to do is TRICKY. I started off by doing little videos of my outfit posts, which whilst were fun and would get a few views, the extra effort involved was so not worth the time it took up in my blogging schedule. If you blog about fashion and beauty, keep it about the same thing. I use my YouTube channel as an avenue for my followers to get a more behind-the-scenes version of me and my blog, so seeing what things I’ve been buying, my favourite beauty bits, and letting in on secrets with my hair styling. Chances are if you’ve had someone comment on your Instagram saying they love your hair or makeup, then there’s more people out there that want to see exactly how you did it.
Work out what works for you, and do it in your own way.
Get over it girl/boy. Seriously. So did I! Watching my friends snapchats of me back to myself was cringe enough to make me break out into a rash. Itchy. With the first one or two videos, you will be like “oh my god I didn’t think I looked/sound like that and why do I pull that weird face when I say words that begin with an S and wait do I have a lisp I never realised I had a lisp,”… and it’s weird. Uncomfortable. And you do cringe. But, you get over it really quickly. It becomes almost clinical way of editing. It’s just about getting used to me. Trust me, it’s like ripping of a plaster – it only hurts for a second.
Equipment is key. I’m currently doing all of my videos on my Panasonic Lumix GF6 and I think the quality is incredible. It’s an affordable (ish) camera (that I will actually be selling soon at an even more reduced price – any takers?!) and it’s great because it’s smallish, lightweight, and it has one of those fab selfie screens you can flip up so you can see how you look when you record.
iMovie will be your best bet with editing. I’m a technological imbecile because I skipped all IT classes back in school (oops) and so I struggle with the most basic of things- Microsoft excel anyone? But iMovie is relatively simple to use after getting used to it. You can buy the updated version cheaply, and most Macs come with it anyway. It’s more a case of working out what style and aesthetic you want to go with for your videos and sticking to something that works with your brand.
I hope this has been of some help, and here’s a shameless plug of my new video over on my YouTube channel